The National Academy of Sciences has elected two members of New York University’s faculty to its ranks: Leslie Greengard, a professor of mathematics and computer science in NYU’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, and Richard Novick, a microbiologist at the NYU School of Medicine’s Skirball Institute for Biomolecular Medicine. There are now 27 NYU faculty who are members of NAS.

Greengard, elected to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) this winter, is a pioneer in the development of algorithms and software for fast multiple methods. The recipient of NYU’s 2004 Margaret and Herman Sokol Faculty Award in the Sciences, Greengard also heads NYU’s new Computation in Science and Society initiative. The initiative is concerned not only with the physical and biological sciences, but also the extension of the role of computation and statistical analysis into such less traditional fields as education, the social sciences, and the arts. Greengard earned both his M.D. and Ph.D. from Yale University in 1987 and has taught at NYU throughout his entire academic career. From 2001-2004 he was the chief executive officer and chief technology officer for MadMax Optics, Inc., in Hamden, CT. The awards he has received for his work include The Leroy P. Steel Prize from the American Mathematical Society, a National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator Award, and a Packard Foundation Fellowship.

Novick, professor of microbiology and medicine, is a member of Skirball’s Molecular Pathogenesis Program. He has devoted his career to studying Staphylococcus aureus, a notorious bacterium that causes a wide variety of illnesses, from relatively minor skin abscesses to life-threatening toxic shock syndrome, and is the leading cause of hospital-acquired infections. Antibiotics kill the pathogen, but in recent years it has increasingly become resistant to the most commonly used antibiotics. Novick’s laboratory spent many years working out the molecular genetics of antibiotic resistance. More recently the lab has become dedicated to understanding the molecular mechanisms by which the bacterium causes disease, and to devising ways to block its effects. His laboratory discovered and characterized a master gene, or global regulator, which controls a signaling pathway in the bacterium that is responsible for the production and release of its toxins and other disease-causing products. Novick received his M.D. degree with Honors in Microbiology from NYU School of Medicine in 1959 and was a postdoctoral fellow at the National Institute for Medical Research in London, England in 1961 and 1962. He did his residency training at Vanderbilt University Hospital (1962-63) and was a special postdoctoral fellow at New York’s Rockefeller University from 1963 to 1965. He was Director of The Public Health Research Institute in New York from 1982-92 and an adjunct professor at NYU Medical School for many years. He became a member of the NYU School of Medicine faculty in 1993.

New York University, located in the heart of Greenwich Village, was established in 1831 and is one of America’s leading research universities and a member of the selective Association of American Universities. It is one of the largest private universities, it is a leader in attracting international students and scholars in the U.S, and it sends more students to study abroad than any other U.S. college or university. Through its 14 schools and colleges, NYU conducts research and provides education in the arts and sciences, law, medicine, business, dentistry, education, nursing, the cinematic and performing arts, music, public administration, social work, and continuing and professional studies, among other areas.

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